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Congratulations to UKBCSD member Bradford, on being named UK City of Culture 2025

1 June 2022
Reading Time: 2 mins

Culture and Clean Growth aren’t two different things: they are both about people, and the need to make their lives better

Jason Longhurst, chair of the UK Business Council for Sustainable Development and Strategic Director of Place at Bradford Council, said: “As part of Bradford’s successful bid to be named UK City of Culture 2025 we put a giant sign outside our magnificent city hall. It reads in capital letters: PEOPLE MAKE BRADFORD.

“People make Bradford great. People were at the centre of our City of Culture bid, just as they are at the centre of our plans for Clean Growth, which is why we were so confident our bid would succeed.

“We do not see culture as separate from Clean Growth, but an integral part of it: an economic and social opportunity, through which we can harness the youth and vibrancy of this great city and create sustainable jobs and skills for all our communities. Precisely because of our people, culture can be an important vehicle for driving inclusive, environmentally-sound growth.

“At UKBCSD we take exactly the same approach. Sustainability isn’t simply about net-zero targets, important though they may be. It is also about creating better places - better jobs, better homes, better communities - for everyone.

“We can and must achieve a net zero future. That is a given. But precisely what that future looks like will determine whether we have succeeded or failed in a wider sense.

“Can we deliver a sustainable future? Can we deliver a functioning economy which works for people? What jobs are people doing? Where - and how - do they live? Are our communities thriving and happy? And all of them - or just some?

“If we cannot deliver clean growth and deliver a sustainable economy which creates jobs for people then we will have failed.

“No society will embark on sustainability and reaching net zero unless we can create jobs and a functioning economy for people.

“As we now look forward to delivering the best and most sustainable city of culture ever a few things are upmost in our minds:

  •       Delivering the most incredible year of sustainable cultural events which transforms people’s perceptions about Bradford
  •       Creating jobs and a functioning economy through culture and our ten-year cultural strategy.
  •       Enabling Bradford to successfully transition to sustainability by making sure that Bradford’s is the UK’s leading clean growth city and creating sustainable jobs and a sustainable economy for people through developments like the UK’s largest clean growth testbed in Bradford, which will deliver one million square foot of commercial space for biotech, agritech and cleantech businesses.

“Our team in Bradford have done an exceptional job to win the competition to become UK City of Culture. Now it’s time to go again.

“We cannot wait to welcome the UK and the rest of the world to Bradford to show them our plans for culture and clean growth.”